A vanpool consists of a group of commuters who work similar hours and who travel similar routes. For example, it could be eight people who all live in western Cranston and work in businesses at Quonset Business Park. The participants sign up to lease a comfortable, late-model van or SUV provided by Commute with Enterprise.
The participants decide if they will have a primary driver or rotate driving responsibilities. They also decide the daily route and the times that the van arrives at and leaves work. The participants decide on all stop locations, so they can meet at a designated location, such as a Park N’ Ride lot, or be picked up from their homes. The van can be parked overnight at the driver’s home or any other designated location approved by Enterprise.
Some of the federal funding that RIPTA and most other transit authorities receive is designated to help reduce the number of single occupancy vehicles on the road. RIPTA is using some of those funds to provide the subsidy and help introduce more Rhode Islanders to the benefits of vanpooling!
Is There Any Fine Print?
To qualify for the RIPTA vanpool subsidy, either the origin or destination of the commute must be in Rhode Island. Also, each vanpool is required to log miles traveled so RIPTA can comply with its national data reporting requirements. (Enterprise will provide forms for this, so it’s easy to do.)